KFnet in T-Town

Sep. 30, 2011 at 9:28am

Link Light Rail Pleasantly Ad-Free

Has anyone else noticed the ad spam that use to cover the inside of Tacoma's Link light rail has vanished? Check it out (from March 2008 on the left to Sept. 2011 on the right):

I once looked into buying ads there and, if I'm not mistaken, Sound Transit farmed out this duty to none other than, wait for it, Clear Channel. Good riddance! My guess is the deal wasn't worth it for ST because, as we've come to realize with all things billboards, Clear Channel doesn't care about Tacoma or sharing the wealth here.

comments [25]  |  posted under ads, clear channel, link light rail, tacoma


by fredo on 9/30/2011 @ 9:30am
Now if we could only get Link Light Rail to operate pleasantly tax-payer subsidy free.

by NineInchNachos on 9/30/2011 @ 9:33am

by Nick on 9/30/2011 @ 9:41am
I dunno, I was actually ok with the ads. I mean, they were more appropriate than billboards and with the majority of them being local, it was actually a decent way to connect with local businesses. Maybe the solution would be to simply deal directly with local businesses instead of needlessly involving the likes of CC. Heck, pay me a monthly stipend and I'll do it for 'em :-D

by KevinFreitas on 9/30/2011 @ 9:42am
I'm sure we'll get there @fredo, especially once it's expands north and south. I'll happily pay a reasonable fee if it services more of the area.

by NineInchNachos on 9/30/2011 @ 9:51am
look at those ads... they're hideous. Probably done in-house by clear channel outdoor themselves.

by tacoma1 on 9/30/2011 @ 10:47am
I don't know how much revenue ST receives from those ads but every thing has to help, so I don't mind seeing them.

Perhaps you can think of an example of a transportation system in the USofA that functions without a taxpayer subsidy. Whether you travel by plane, train, automobile, bus, bicycle, or feet. All modes rely on tax payer subsidies.

by fredo on 9/30/2011 @ 2:41pm
"Whether you travel by plane, train, automobile, bus, bicycle, or feet. All modes rely on tax payer subsidies." tacoma1

Those modes of transportation use 100% taxpayer subsidies like the Link Light Rail? I did not know that.

by NineInchNachos on 9/30/2011 @ 2:48pm
forgive my ignorance but isn't the free link funded by a grant from the boeing and microsoft or whatever? I think i read that at one point.

by L.S.Erhardt on 9/30/2011 @ 2:51pm
The bLink isn't "subsidized". The operating funds for it were included into the cost that was voted on and approved by this region of ST service.

Just like roads aren't subsidized. You pay taxes that the voters approve.

Subsidies are the government allocating funds to "help" a project/program/group/company/whatever operate whereas they might not be able to otherwise.

So, for an example:

Tacoma voters pass a 1% increase on sales tax to build and operate more light rail. This is not a subsidized item.

Uncle Sam gives ST $50,000,000 to help keep them close a "funding shortfall" and keep them in business. This IS a subsidy.

by jenyum on 9/30/2011 @ 4:17pm
Thought those ads were through Titan Outdoor? Did that change?

by jenyum on 9/30/2011 @ 4:25pm
Yeah, definitely Titan. www.piercetransit.org/faq.htm#ads

by KevinFreitas on 9/30/2011 @ 4:26pm
Think you're right Jen -- been a while since my inquiry so didn't recall. Can't imagine ST would've ever made much of anything from ads there.

by jenyum on 9/30/2011 @ 5:47pm
I looked into advertising with them at one point, too. They quoted low rates but then wanted you to buy many many spaces at that rate (worked out to a fortune) not a lot of small businesses around here can do that, and they sure don't appreciate being upsold like that.

by NineInchNachos on 9/30/2011 @ 7:14pm
link is sound transit and clear channel

pierce transit is titian outdoor

by jenyum on 9/30/2011 @ 8:07pm
They work with both or at least they used to. They offered spots on the sounder and the link.

Edited to say: I guess that contract ended, they had it from 2006-09


by NineInchNachos on 9/30/2011 @ 8:12pm
yes the sounder and link are both rail... choochoo trains. Only sound transit can run those. Pierce Transit is a different wholly incompetent organization. :)

by fredo on 9/30/2011 @ 8:29pm
I am happy to learn that the taxpayers are not subsidizing the operation of the Link Light Rail Line.

by tacoma1 on 9/30/2011 @ 9:44pm
For heavens sake fredo, get over it. All transportation in the US is supported in some amount, by tax payer dollars. According to Merriam Webster, that would make it a subsidy. Some modes are subsidized more than others. Most of your transportation tax dollars go to roads, not transit. If you want to significantly lower your taxes, lower your highway tax bill, not your transit tax bill.

From Merriam Webster:
Definition of SUBSIDY
a: a grant or gift of money: as a : a sum of money formerly granted by the British Parliament to the crown and raised by special taxation
b : money granted by one state to another
c : a grant by a government to a private person or company to assist an enterprise deemed advantageous to the public

by fredo on 10/1/2011 @ 6:52am
Tacoma1, it was thorax who commented that the Link wasn't subsidized. And for the record, the sales tax that supports the Link doesn't fit your merriam webster definition of SUBSIDY so maybe Thorax is right. The problem is that the public commonly refers to the money used to support transit as a subsidy even if it technically isn't.

I am on record as approving some public subsidy to provide public transportation. I just think that most operating expenses should be paid at the farebox.

by ixia on 10/1/2011 @ 7:42am
Can you believe what people do with money? They pay for fire departments, schools, the police? Public transportation and the salary of the AG? Letís throw the communal good out of the window and become Nigeria. Everybody for themselves - survival of the fittest. Now thatís TRUE freedom.

by fredo on 10/1/2011 @ 7:50am
I didn't comment that we shouldn't have services provided by a public sector. However, it's not fair to say that every service provided by the public sector is of equal value. I think the fire department and police department are more important than transportation and more important than medical care for illegal aliens.

I never suggested that the public shouldn't pay for the communal good or become Nigeria. We should however, overlay our communal spending with some common sense frugality.

by ixia on 10/1/2011 @ 8:25am
If you want public service you are against TRUE freedom!

by tacoma1 on 10/1/2011 @ 9:21am
I, for one, am sick and tired of people using the sidewalk in front of my house without paying for it. Especially the kids. I know those little bastards never paid a dime of taxes.

by fredo on 10/1/2011 @ 12:36pm
sidewalks aren't paid for by taxpayers but by the abutting property owners, at least that's my understanding.

by tacoma1 on 10/1/2011 @ 3:52pm
Hmmmm. The city owns it, and requires me to pay for it, and then grants free usage to the public. Sounds like a tax to me. If not, it certainly fits the definition of a subsidy.

c : a grant by a government to a private person or company to assist an enterprise deemed advantageous to the public


Although I have another home on the web I thought it might be nice to lead by example a bit and put this blog system up to the test myself.

So far, so good... Funny how I build web tools for other people that are far better than the one's I have setup over on KFnet.


Hey Clear Channel, Clean Up Your Crap!

Advantage: Tacoma

Quick Bites

Recent Posts